Tuesday, November 19, 2013

EfM Mentor Training January 16-18

Education for Ministry (EfM) Mentor Training has been scheduled for January 16 through 18 at Chanco on the James. At present, both Basic In-Service and Formation training are planned. Those who successfully complete the weekend will be accredited as Mentors by the University of the South. Click here for more information.  

Advent app from Church Publishing, Inc.

Walk, don't run, through Advent with "It's Advent!" This new daily devotional app from Church Publishing is suitable for all ages and features the artwork of renowned cartoonist, Jay Sidebotham. Scripture readings and the Sermon on the Mount bring the anticipation of Advent to life. Compatible with all iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch devices running iOS 7.0 or greater. Click here for more information. 

Presiding Bishop's address to groundbreaking public forum on racism

"Let us dream of a world where every family, language, people, and nation is gathered in the commonwealth of God," Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said at the groundbreaking public forum Fifty Years Later: The State of Racism in America. "Learn vigilance, teach and work for justice, that we might become the beloved community of God's rainbow people - every family, language, people, and nation gathered before the Lamb, himself one of the lowly and rejected.  Dream that world into being here on earth, and drive out hell to bring it to birth!" Click here to read the address. 

Fifty Years Later: The State of Racism in America, presented on November 15, explored racism in today's society and was sponsored by  The Episcopal Church and the Diocese of Mississippi. The on-demand video of the forum will be available on the Episcopal Church's website later this week.

Registration now open for New Community Gathering, March 13-16

Registration is now open for the popular Episcopal Church New Community Gathering, March 13-16, 2014. The theme for event is "Together, Advancing the Sacred Dream." Sponsored by the Episcopal Church Diversity and Ethnic Ministries Team, plenary and workshop topics will provide opportunities for clergy and lay people to explore advocacy and mission in ethnic ministries. Also included will be ethnic-specific meetings, inter-ethnic and cross cultural conversations, and multicultural banquet and worship celebrations.

The event will be held at Kanuga Conference Center, Hendersonville, NC. Registration is available here. Registration does not include transportation to Kanuga. Registration deadline is February 3. Scholarships are available to ethnic delegates on a first come, first served basis; check the registration information.

For more information:
The Rev. Winfred Vergara, Asiamerican Missioner (wvergara@episcopalchurch.org);
The Rev. Angela Ifill, Black Ministries Missioner (aifill@episcopalchurch.org );
The Rev. Anthony GuillĂ©n, Latino/Hispanic Missioner ( aguillen@episcopalchurch.org);
Sarah Eagle Heart, Indigenous Missioner (seagleheart@episcopalchurch.org ).

Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace: An Episcopal gathering to challenge the epidemic of violence

Registration is now open for Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace: An Episcopal gathering to challenge the epidemic of violence April 9 - 11, 2014 at the Reed Center and Sheraton in Oklahoma City, OK (Diocese of Oklahoma). Registration and more information is available here

At Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace: An Episcopal Gathering to Challenge the Epidemic of Violence, Episcopalians will come together to renew their commitment to the Gospel call to make peace in a world of violence. Through deep conversation, prayer, and skill-building the event will empower the participants to address violence and reclaim their role in society as workers for nonviolence and peace. Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace is focused around four pillars: advocacy, education, liturgy, and pastoral care. These four areas are key avenues to address the culture of violence within and outside of the Church and will be woven throughout all aspects of the event including plenary time, workshops, small group conversations, and worship.

Come to the Table: A group for clergy women

Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care's "Come to the Table" is a therapy group designed exclusively for clergy women of all faith traditions who have been called by God to vocational ministry. Areas of potential group focus include:
  • Managing stresses of pastoral ministry
  • Being attentive to and improving self care
  • Developing personal and spiritual disciplines
  • Balancing work, home and family
  • Managing interpersonal relationships
  • Dealing with depression, anxiety, grief or loss
The group will meet on Mondays from 12 to 1:30 p.m. at the main office of VIPCare, 2000 Bremo Road, Suite 105, Richmond. For information please contact Dr. Sandy Hamilton, 804-282-8332.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A message from Bishop Hollerith on how you can help provide relief to the Philippines

Dear Diocesan Family, 

Our prayers are with the people of the Philippines who have been devastated by typhoon Haiyan. I am pleased to report that Episcopal Relief & Development is already working closely with the Episcopal Church in the Philippines as they determine the best way to provide assistance and relief.

The storm made landfall in the central Philippines on the morning of November 8, causing widespread damage and disabling power and communications lines. Reports estimate that 9.5 million people across 41 provinces were affected by the storm, with 630,000 displaced and served both inside and outside the 1,645 active evacuation centers. The report also estimates the number of damaged houses at just under 20,000. Rescue and relief efforts are reportedly being hampered due to roads being clogged with debris.
The Episcopal Church in the Philippines is working with the National Council of Churches in the Philippines, an ecumenical group of which it is a member, to develop a coordinated response strategy.  Episcopal Relief & Development will provide technical and financial assistance to aid these efforts.

You can respond to the needs of those impacted by this disaster with your gift to Episcopal Relief & Development's Disaster Response Fund.  Click here for more information.

Bishop Hollerith 

O God our help in time of trouble, we pray for the Filipino people who have suffered this grievous natural disaster. We pray that survivors may find water, food, and shelter, and news of their missing loved ones. There is trauma and destruction in many places, and little news from some of the areas hardest hit. Give peace and confidence, O Lord, to those in the midst of the whirlwind. Open hearts and hands around the world to respond sacrificially to the urgent need. Help us to remember that we are connected, one to another, the living to the dead, the comfortable to the suffering, the peaceful to the worried and anxious. Motivate us to change our hearts, for our misuse and pollution of the earth you have given us to share has something to do with this disaster.  Show us your suffering Son in the midst of this Calvary, that we might love one another as he has loved us.  In your holy name we pray.  Amen.  --  Prayer offered by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori.

Annual Council: Deadline for nominations and resolutions is December 6

Nominations for elections and resolutions for our 122nd Annual Council (Feb. 7-8, 2014) are now being accepted. The deadline for submissions is December 6, 2013. The nomination form can be found on our website. You will also find information about and requirements for each position open for election. Elections to take place are Standing Committee (1 Lay, 1 Clergy), Disciplinary Board (1 Lay, 2 Clergy), Provincial Synod (1 Lay), and General Convention Deputation (4 Lay Deputies and 4 Lay Alternates, 4 Clergy Deputies and 4 Clergy Alternates).

Resolutions for Annual Council should be sent to the Rev. Charles Robinson, chair of the Resolutions and Memorials Committee, crobinson@brutonparish.org. Resolutions concerning Canons and Constitution should be sent to diocesan Chancellor Sam Webster, swebster@wilsav.com.  

2014 Clergy Compensation Guidelines online

Clergy Compensation Guidelines for 2014 are now available on our website.
Each year, the Compensation Commission recommends a cost-of-living adjustment for clergy and lay employees and re-issues the Clergy Compensation Manual & Guidelines. The Compensation Table reflects comparable pension-based total compensation amounts based on the size of the congregation, using pledge & plate revenues and average Sunday attendance from the Parochial Reports. These are merely guidelines to be used by the vestry and clergy to determine compensation for the clergy.

If you have questions, please contact Canon for Administration, the Rev. Ed Tracy, etracy@diosova.org or 757-213-3378.

Integrity to meet at LGBT Center of Hampton Roads

Integrity is now meeting monthly at the LGBT Center of Hampton Roads. The next meeting will be held Tuesday, November 19. The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. and includes a potluck dinner. The LGBT Center is located at 247 West 25th Street, Norfolk, VA 23517. Integrity meets the third Tuesday of each month. For more information contact Integrity, integrityvb@gmail.com. Follow them on Facebook.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Service of Repentance, Reconciliation & Healing

Our diocesan Service of Repentance, Reconciliation & Healing for the sin of racism was held on Saturday, November 2 at Christ and St. Luke's, Norfolk. Bishop Hollerith read a Formal Apology on Behalf of the Diocese of Southern Virginia. The Reverend Canon Stephanie Spellers, Canon for Missional Vitality in the Diocese of Long Island and Chaplain to the Episcopal House of Bishops, was the preacher. An inter-parish diocesan choir, drawn from 10 parishes and led by Christ & St. Luke's Music Director Kevin Kwan, led the music. Click here to see more pictures from the service. Click here for our Repairing the Breach resources, including a video and study guide. 


Your diocesan pledge makes it possible

Cross-diocesan School for Deacons    

The Gathering Place outdoor service in Richmond - organized by Deacon Becki Dean of St. Michael's, Bon Air. This time of worship and community is geared to meet the needs of those who might not find their way into a church on Sunday morning. 
In January, postulants will be entering the new Cross Diocesan School for Deacons. The school is an exciting collaboration between our diocese and the Diocese of Virginia.

This new school has been created specifically for the training of deacons. A total of twelve to fifteen postulants, recommended by the Commission on Ministry of their respective diocese and approved by their bishop, will attend. The school will meet at Chanco on the James and at Shalom House in the Diocese of Virginia. The school's teachers and staff come from both dioceses, as well as from around the Episcopal Church. When postulants complete the school and receive candidacy, they will be ordained to the diaconate and assigned to a parish by their bishop for a certain period of time.

Although deacons can be seen assisting at the liturgy, the liturgical function is just one part of a deacon's ministry. Deacons often serve among those who are anxious, fearful or live in the shadows of life - particularly the poor, sick and oppressed. In those shadows, deacons serve with compassion to help bring about healing, hope and restoration where possible.

In ministry, deacons visibly represent the Church proclaiming the Risen Lord is alive and walks among us. In so doing, they also seek to inspire each one of us to serve in our own unique way as best our strengths and gifts will permit. A deacon's ministry is one that weaves together the Church, the world and the Risen Christ into the fabric of everyday common life that wraps around us.

Your diocesan pledge makes possible this gift to the Episcopal Church in Southern Virginia and indeed the whole of God's Church.

Covenant Players visit Jackson-Feild

The Covenant Players made their annual visit to Jackson-Feild Homes October 29. This traveling repertory theatre company has been entertaining audiences since 1963. It is comprised of over 100 teams that travel worldwide to share the message of the love of God and the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Dr. Bill Bowling, Principal of the Hayden Gwaltney School, welcomed the group to the campus. Their performance was held in the Robinson/Withers Recreation Building.

Three members of The Covenant Players used the medium of drama to bring hope, encouragement and a positive message to the students. Their efforts were well received and much appreciated.

The troupe will soon be traveling to Haiti for performances in tent cities. It will be the first time that the Covenant Players have ever performed in Haiti. They hope to spread their message of dealing with the complexities of the human condition while respecting the separation of church and state to a new audience.